Your business operates under the Canada Labour Code? You’ll probably want to take note of recent changes on the certification and revocation of a trade union and on the calculation of the holiday pay for general holidays.

Changes in rules on trade unions

On certification — As of June this year, a trade union seeking to represent a group of employees will have to demonstrate to the Canadian Industrial Relations Board that a majority of workers in the unit have voted to be represented by the union. A trade union can no longer be accredited on the spot merely by presenting membership cards. The trade union will first have to demonstrate that at least 40% of the employees in the unit wish to be represent ted by the union. Once this burden has been met, the union will be accredited if, after a secret ballot, a majority of employees elect the union as their representative.

Revocation of certification — An employee claiming to represent at least 40% of the employees in the bargaining unit will be allowed to launch revocation proceedings: this threshold is reduced from 50%. If the Board is satisfied that at least 40% of the employees no longer wish to be represented by the union, it will order a secret ballot on the question. The accreditation will be revoked by a majority vote. However, the vote will not be valid if less than 35% of the employees who are eligible to vote have voted.

Simply stated, as of June 2015, trade unions will have to be more convincing if they want to be and to remain certified representatives of employees.

New methods of calculation of holiday pay

Under certain conditions, an employee is entitled to a holiday with pay on general holidays. Under the Code, there are about ten such days in the year: New Year’s Day, Victoria Day, Canada Day, Labour Day, etc.

Since March 16, the multiple rules applicable to the calculation of the compensation have been replaced with a single general rule for all employees. The new rule will facilitate the employers’ calculation of the compensation for employees with fluctuating pay, while providing benefits to more employees. An employee shall receive holiday pay equal to at least one twentieth of the wages earned in the four-week period immediately preceding the week in which the general holiday occurs, excluding overtime pay.

Employees are not entitled to holiday pay for a general holiday that occurs in their first 30 days of employment.